Okay, so, I feel like I should address this as the internet is going absolutely wild about it. Last week, as you all know, the colour page stated that there were only '?' number of chapters of Bleach remaining.
However, Anime News Network has just posted saying that Volume 74, the one we are CURRENTLY IN, is the final volume. That means that there are only FIVE chapters of Bleach left. Now we've all known that this is the final arc ever since it started 200 chapters ago. But, if the series is truly ending in early August, then I'm hugely disappointed.
Here is a list, just off of the top of my head, of things that probably won't be addressed if the story ends in 5 chapters:
- Backstory for the Soul King
- 1,000 year flashback of the first Shinigami/Quincy war
- Bankais for Ukitake, Shinji, Love, Zero Division (I think there's still a chance we could get Isshin's Bankai, maybe)
- Backstory for the Zero Division
- Fullbringer involvement in the war
- Harribel involvement in the war
- Aizen's role in the story
- Urahara and Yoruichi's backstory
That's just off of the top of my head, but I'm sure you can think of more. You can see then, how ending the story abruptly in 5 chapters would be immensely sad.
Having been reading Bleach on a weekly basis since the Kenpachi vs Nnoitra fight almost a decade ago, Bleach has been a momentous part of my life. It's been a constant, every week and helped define my teenage years. No matter how turbulent my life has been, the series has always been there. It will probably be my favourite series of all time, and I know a lot of you feel the same, even with Bleach's declining popularity over the last five or six years.
The news of Bleach's final volume comes at the end of volume 73, which was just released in Japan. It states that 74 is the final volume. That means that everything has to end in 5 weeks. Judging by the way the last chapter went, this seems inconceivable. To learn the Final Getsuga, something that was considered by many to be a major deus ex machina, it still took Ichigo almost ten weeks. Even after that, he still had to fight Aizen for about four more weeks. This is telling us that Ichigo, who has just lost all his powers and collapsed into utmost defeat, will rise up and defeat Yhwach, who is basically a future-warping God at this point, in 5 weeks maximum. Absolute madness and frankly, impossible.
I'm not ready to say goodbye to these characters. But, it looks like we may be forced to say goodbye sooner than expected. Sooner than we deserved. I've defended Kubo's writing many times. Yes, there have been times I felt disappointed in him as a writer. But that has been far outweighed by the immense amount of joy, excitement and intrigue the series has brought me over the years. But Kubo himself deserves a better ending than this. So many things don't add up. Even the little things, like volume cover characters - no offense to the guy, but are you seriously telling me, that in his grand, uninterrupted plan, Kubo had planned for Renji to receive the penultimate cover? Not someone like Rukia?
Alas, we could be hugely overreacting and the series isn't ending that quickly. Unfortunately, it's a wait-and-see scenario right now. I just had to vent a bit.
Let me know in the comments what you think of all this. Here's the ANN article: www.animenewsnetwork.com/news/…